The Concept of Truth

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We’ve all heard people say “live your own truth.” The problem with that statement is in the word “truth.” For truth to be truth, it must be based on an absolute standard. God is that standard, and to use any other standard leads us away from the one and only truth that He laid out for us.

 

 

Today we’re living in a world of confusion. Chaos and lies. We don’t know what the truth is. What’s up is down. What’s down is up, what’s right has become wrong, what’s wrong is deemed it right. And people need a sure place to go to learn the truth. God has given us a location for the truth and that is his apparent perfect word. That’s why we need to return the truth. Which means we need to return to the bible. The death of truth has led to a breakdown in the cultural immune system. They hated jesus because he was of the truth. If they are not taking me seriously, that’s because they don’t take truth seriously. We must adjust and be people of the truth. The whole truth. Nothing but the truth. So help. Ugh! God, you and I are living in a day where you are watching the death of truth. The death of truth has led to a breakdown in the cultural immune system and the shattering that has taken place as truth is being buried and funeral. Ized is replete you want the truth. But because we’re living in a day when you’re watching the Death of Truth, everything has become up for grabs, leading to cataclysmic confusion. There’s psychological confusion. People’s mental trajectory is off because there is no truth to define it. There is philosophical confusion as people doodle with ideas. The bible calls it ever learning and never coming into the knowledge of the truth. That’s what second timothy calls it. They are collecting information, going to school, going to college, but never arriving at the truth. Second timothy 37 says it’s amazing how dumb the educated are becoming. As they stand at the graveyard of truth. Huh? There is scientific confusion as people deal with the probabilities and possibilities and potentialities of life only to find out that the scientists changed their minds because they discover new things and what they thought was the truth wasn’t fully the truth. Hm There is entertainment, confusion. You listen to talk shows and you’re listening to babble by the hour. As confused people lead a confused audience where there is this plethora of opinions and you don’t know who to believe, who to listen to, who to follow. There is communicative confusion on social media where everybody’s got a thought and they want to share it. So you find yourselves following and being followed. There is uh spiritual confusion, crickets in the pulpit chirping noises without clarity. Mm The one thing that ought to mark the christian and the church of jesus christ is that they are people of the truth. They are people who take the concept of truth seriously. in John chapter 18 let me read these two verses, verses 37 and 38, jesus is before Pilate and jesus says When asked, reverse 36, my kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom of this world, then my servants would be fighting. So that I would not be handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from this realm. Therefore, Pilate said to him. So you are a king Verse 37, Jesus answered. You say correctly that I am a king for this, I have been born and for this, I have come into the world to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth. Here’s me. Then pilot in verse 38 says to jesus, what is truth? Pilot is an agnostic. He questions whether you can know truth. What in the world is it? Many people are like that. They don’t they don’t they don’t know whether truth is ever findable. So the concept of truth is a question mark. What is then there is rationalism that view says the truth is what you can logically and intellectually perceive. It becomes the mind of the academician, the learn erred. The truth is that what your mind can grab and it makes sense to you and then that makes it truth for others. It’s pragmatism. Pragmatism says truth is what works if it worked. It’s true. Truth is what works there is um fatty is um truth is subjective, it’s kind of how you feel kind of kind of what gets you moving on the inside. That’s true. So you’ve got all of these ISMs that are trying to help us to grab. The subject of truth and the answer Pilate’s question, what is truth? Jesus says, I have come to bring the truth truth can be defined as an absolute standard by which reality is measured. Let me say that again. The definition of truth is an absolute standard by which reality is measured. Truth is an absolute standard by which reality is measured. First of all, you have to understand truth exist, Jesus says in John 832 and you shall know the truth. So truth is something that exists. There is a thing called truth. It’s not a made up concept or made up word. We use the word all the time, even though people define it differently. Truth exists, Jesus says, I came to bring witness to the truth. Not only does truth exist. Truth that exists is knowable. You shall know the truth. So truth is something that can be learned, understood or discovered. This absolute standard by which reality is measured does exist and it is knowable. But here’s what you need to know. Truth sits outside of you. It is an objective standard. That is absolute in its origin. It is an objective standard. That is absolute in its origin. Okay, what I mean by that is truth. The absolute standard about which reality is measured, transcends your emotions. In other words, how you feel, does not determine whether it’s true. Last time I checked one plus one equals two, it is two now and one and one will be to tomorrow because it is a fixed absolute standard by which reality is to be measured or else you couldn’t do math because you need a fixed standard today, we’ve got people walking around feeling who they are and abandoning an objective standard. Now, I want to talk about this in more detail in terms of love and sensitivity, but none of that should infringe on the truth. Okay, let me tell you something else. Truth is deeper than facts. Truth is deeper than facts. Truth includes facts. But you can have facts and not know the truth. So if you have the facts, but you don’t know the truth, you can’t get to the resolution of the problem. One of the problems today is people are going to school and getting educated with facts, but not being told the truth. And that’s where everybody’s getting confused because the facts are real. And if the facts are real, you assume because if the facts are real, that it must be also the truth. The truth has to originate from an originating source in order to determine it’s the truth, not just because it is factually correct. So when people have facts, but don’t want the truth, they’ll switch on you. So, what we got today is people bouncing around, they’re just bouncing around until they get to somebody who tells them what they want to hear because they don’t want to know the truth a fixed standard and absolute standard by which reality is to be measured, Pilate said, what is truth? You’re gonna run into a problem if you decide to take your faith seriously and become a person and people of the truth because you’re going to run into people who don’t buy truth. But if you decide as every christian should to be a person of the truth, why can’t you be your own truth? Let me give you a few reasons why you can’t be the standard for truth. First of all, you can’t be the standard because you, me, us our sinful people. So our our our truth gets distorted by our own sin. Another reason You can’t be the standard for truth. I can’t be the standard for truth is because we are finite. We are limited by our humanity. We don’t know all things about our subjects. So that’s why we learned. We learned because we found out new stuff that we didn’t know yesterday. How many times you said in your life? Oh, I didn’t know that. Or even if you didn’t say that, you said, well, I didn’t understand that. Because your finite you are finite, finite. We are limited. So you can’t be the truth. There’s another reason why you can’t be the standard of truth. And no other person can be that either is because of the schemes of the devil. The doctrine of demons. Demons have a school and most of humanity is enrolled where satan and the demonic forces trick people with the truth or with the lies or with partial truth in order to deceive And there’s probably not too many people under the side of my voice who haven’t been duped by the devil a time or two. Another reason why you and nobody else, you know, can be the final arbiter of truth is because of the secularization of the culture. You’re living in a world of lives, you and I are being bombarded with lies, they’re painted, they’re dressed up, but you and I are living in a world of deception. And this secular world has increasingly, as it is, drifted from a Judeo christian ethic become a a liars paradise. So you and nobody, you know, can be the ultimate standard for truth because nobody is infinite, nobody is perfect, the devil is deceitful and the culture is contaminated, jesus says, I have come down to be a witness to the truth, To give testimony to the truth. If you want absolute truth, it must come from an absolute source. If you want perfect truth, it must come from a perfect source. Everything else is guesswork. There is only one perfect source in the universe. God. So if you want to get rid of truth, you gotta get rid of God. That’s why certain political movements, socialism, communism, Marxism have to keep religion either eradicated or marginalized, so that they don’t have to deal with God because in those systems they want government to be the arbiter of truth, even in our own nation, as we shift away from a Judeo christian worldview. There is this attack on the freedom of religion. Why? Because religion based in God becomes a problem because it’s calling for an absolute standard outside of what people say. And think the bible declares that God is truth. So 31 verse five, The God of Truth, Isaiah 65 verse 16 scripture declares that the God of truth cannot lie Hebrew six verse 18. In fact, let me tell you how radical it is romans. Chapter three verse four Let God be true and every man a liar. Hello, Let God be true and everybody Yeah, a liar. So here what that means is when you and anybody, you know, disagrees with God, you all wrong because it is impossible for God to lie. He can’t be, he can’t be wrong because there is nothing in his nature to when you know everything about everything. You can’t be wrong when you know past, present and future. You can’t be wrong when you have made it all sustain it all. And one day will destroy it all. You can’t be wrong, Jesus declared as part of the Trion godhead That he came John 1 14 full of Grace and Truth, john 14 verse six, I am the way the truth. Notice the article. I’m not a truth. I’m the truth I’m not, I’m not this truth among many. I am the standard by which truth is to be measured. The bible calls the Holy Spirit the third member of the trinity. The Spirit of truth, john 14 17, john 15 26 John 1613 over and over again. I’ve given you the Spirit of truth, not the spirit of this world. So you’re not supposed to be checking with the world First, here’s what you need to tell all your young people going to college. You know, we got some kids going to college this year. Here’s what you tell you, tell yourself and then tell all your kids going to college. You can give them this, this heads up. You can be smarter than your teachers. Hey, David said, I’m a smarter than my teachers. Why? Because he started with an absolute standard. So he had a standard to judge what the teachers were saying. The reason why the evolutionary hypothesis is being taught as fact in school is because with evolution, you can get rid of God. You have to deal with God when you, uh, when existence happens by chance, see, they have to get rid of God. So that man, if so facto becomes the standard by which truth is truth is whatever God says something is, it is not what the opinion polls say. It is not what the surveys say. I’m tired of surveys, I’m tired of opinion polls, I’m tired of this group says this, this group says that all, that’s all that’s secondary. If God has spoken, jesus says the Trion God and I have come. Truth is not sourced here. He says I’m coming from another realm. So truth sits outside of time and space. Truth sits outside of your five senses. Truth sits outside because truth comes from a different source. He says. It comes from another round, jesus said and all I’ve done is coming to validate it in human terms. So your question, my question on every subject, not just the subject I want to talk about on every subject is what has God said on this matter. That becomes the question. What has God said on his mind. And if you ask that on the front end instead of the back end, you’ll save yourself a lot of headache. What has God said? What did he mean by what he said? Okay, what do I do in light of what he said? What he meant by what he said? So the question that you’re going to have to answer, I’m going to have to answer. You’re gonna have to talk to your friends about answering. Is this what will be the standard of your determining truth? Will it be your feelings that change? Will it be your intellect that’s finite? Will it be your moral instincts that differ? Because I may think something’s okay? You may think it’s not okay, so we don’t have the same moral code. So what’s going to be the standard in his time? For those of us who name the name of jesus christ to declare we believe in God to return to the truth. Yeah. To not apologizing for being a person of the truth. Now, we’re gonna talk about how you do it. We’re gonna talk about speaking the truth and love. We’re gonna talk about the sensitivities involved. We’re gonna do all that because people are hurting people are confused and all of that, but you still shouldn’t be wavering on the truth. The absolute divinely authorized, objective standard by which reality is measured. It’s the original source. When you and I do that, we decide that we’re not just churchgoers were not just christians. We are people of the truth on all subjects. And you you you can always know a person of the truth because they will want to know what God says, You will always know a person who is not of the truth because they don’t want to hear what God has to say, that is the telltale side. Do they welcome it or do they reject it not? Do they like it or not like it because a lot of God’s truth, you’re not gonna like, tell you that now, lot of God’s truth. You’re not gonna like they hated jesus because he was of the truth, he says, and anybody who is of the truth hears me. So you so if they are not taking me seriously, that’s because they don’t take truth seriously because I was I’m full of grace and truth. So the challenge I give to us today to all who are part of this ministry and this worldview, this kingdom agenda, this the sea of God’s rule. He says, jesus says that it came down from above. Then he says it came down from the kingdom kingdom up there. That kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, that we’re supposed to make an imprint on earth from the information given in heaven. And so when you leave here and live your life, you must live it as a person of the truth. Because that’s the only way you’ll get God’s involvement because he will not fellowship with a lie because in him there is no deceit, no deception. While God wants us to be committed to truth, he wants us to communicate that truth in a certain kind of way. And he defines that way to communicate his truth as communicated in love. What is love? Love is the decision to compassionately righteously and responsibly seek the well being of another. Which means when we’re communicating truth, God’s way, we want that truth to build somebody up and not tear people down. When you’re on my communication of truth is harmful and hurtful. It is belie ng how truth is to be made known.

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Tony Evans Dr. Tony Evans is the founder and senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, founder and president of The Urban Alternative and...

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